I want you to picture a big suitcase stuffed with $929,000 in cash.
It’s all yours.
That’s your wealth.
Now, I want you to imagine that suitcase is tied to a very thin piece of string, suspended high in the air, dangling over a raging torrent of water.
It’s not a very secure arrangement, to say the least.
It would take just one tiny misfortune to see that stack of cash tumble into a watery grave, never to be seen again.
This might sound like a ridiculous scenario in which you’d never find yourself, but it’s what thousands of Australians are subjecting themselves to right now by not having life insurance.
Do you really need it?
There’s an odd perception among most Aussies that life insurance is a cost reserved for the uber rich with dynastic wealth to protect.
For the average person, it’s not really worth it… is it?
That figure of $929,000 above isn’t a random one.
That’s the average wealth of Australian households.
And it’s not gross – but net wealth.
You’re probably worth a bit more than you thought!
Yep, on average, we’re worth about $1 million in the clear, thanks to our property investments, cash savings, businesses, shares and superannuation portfolios.
It means Australians are among the richest in the world.
It’s a fantastic thing.
We’re building sustained household wealth that we can pass onto our kids to ensure they have a secure and happy life.
And hopefully they can build on that inherited wealth and pass it onto their own family.
But what if it all slipped away?
Life insurance is the mechanism that protects all of that.
It’s your safety net.
It’s the tool that doesn’t just make the rope holding that suitcase of cash thicker and sturdier – it means the bag isn’t dangling above danger at all.
Have you got kids? You should have life insurance.
Do you own your home?
You should have life insurance.
Do you own your own business?
There’s no question you should have life insurance.
Do you have debts, such as a mortgage or personal loans?
You should absolutely have life insurance.
Here’s one scenario.
Let’s say you’re married with a few kids, a mortgage on the family home, a car loan and some credit card debt.
Let’s say you’re the primary bread winner and your household expenses are pretty moderate because you like nice things and those two kids are in or about to be in good private schools.
If you died tomorrow… what would happen?
Your income would cease.
Your next of kin would eventually receive your super balance and a payout from the in-built insurance.
But, if you’re in your mid-30s, that could be as little as $150,000, depending on your job and other circumstances.
It’s not an insignificant amount but multiply school fees at a mid-range high school times two and I’d say most of that money is gone.
There’s nothing left over to maintain the mortgage repayments, household expenses, loans and other liabilities.
While they’re grieving your loss and trying to carry on, your family might be faced with the prospect of selling and downsizing or even renting.
The kids might be pulled out of school and sent somewhere else.
Your spouse might have to get a new job or a second job.
The car might have to go.
It’s not just the sudden loss of your income at play, but the loss of security in the eyes of a lender.
The household is one long-term income-earning person down with you not there anymore.
Things are about to get very difficult.
An adequate life insurance policy protects your family by providing financial peace of mind and security.
It’s the safety net should you fall.
It won’t replace you, but it’ll step in to buffer the financial blow.
On top of that
I don’t want to sound grim, but while you’re sorting out your life insurance, please put some other tasks on your list.
Sort out your will.
It’s probably something you’ve either never considered or repeatedly put off.
This is your black and white roadmap for how your finances should be dealt with in the event you’re not here to dictate it yourself.
If you can’t afford it yourself, buy a cheap will kit.
Or contact the Public Trustee in your state – most of them offer it as a free or incredibly cheap service.
Also look into obtaining an enduring power of attorney.
This gives someone you trust the legal ability to make important personal decisions on your behalf, should you be unable to.
This isn’t about morbidly thinking that the worst is around the corner.
It’s about being smart – for your sake and that of your loved ones.
Getting the right financial advice about life insurance
Well all went to get ahead in life and mostly not think about any bad stuff that might happen to us.
But burying your head in the sand is not a strategy to protect your family’s wealth, which is why savvy homebuyers and investors have adequate life insurance policies to protect their nest egg for the next generation.
The world of banking and finance can be a pretty daunting one for both novice and sophisticated investors and since our establishment in 2002 we’ve focused on providing outstanding service and business standards.
This approach has been vindicated many times by our multi award-winning approach.
So, if you’d like to understand more about life insurance, why not contact an independent financial planner to ensure you have the right information and expert support on your side from the very beginning.
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